On Tuesday, I created a video of my children about how they use the SOUNDS IN MOTION program to write at their school. My son Peter (age 6 years, 10 months) showed me a few sounds and told me that he uses sound spelling to write the words. My daughter Eliza (who is 8 years, 10 months) said that she uses sound spelling to write, but then knows when she is writing a word right or wrong because she remembers the way they look in a book. Then they taught Rose (3 years, 3 months) how to pronounce the "V" sound.
When my children write, they are also at different stages of development. While Eliza relies on her visual memory to remember book spelling, Peter relies on the sounds (or phonemes) he hears in each sound of a word. Rose scribbles on paper and "reads" what she has written.
At home, the children find purpose for their writing. They create dinner menus, dictionaries that introduce their heroes (Peter has been writing about Skylanders
- the books, not the video game.), poetry, letters to their friends and
grandparents, notes to parents (so that we don't forget what to do),
grocery lists, instructions for how to do different things they like,
etc. They see
themselves as writers and are not (and should not be) detoured by not knowing how to book
spell a word.
Reading works in much the same purposeful way for the children. We read for fun, but also to find information, to cook, to enjoy the sounds and rhymes in
poetry, to learn about people and their lives, etc.